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AIA: Architects Criticize House Vote Killing Energy Conservation Requirements for Federal Buildings
Washington, D.C. — Dec. 3, 2015 — The American Institute of Architects (AIA) issued the following statement after the House of Representatives passed the North American Energy Security and Infrastructure Act of 2015.
The legislation repeals targets set to reduce fossil fuel consumption for federal buildings in Section 433 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which was passed by Congress and signed into law by then-President George W. Bush.
AIA President Elizabeth Chu Richter said, "Cutting fossil fuel consumption in new and renovated federal buildings by 2030 is clearly something we can achieve as a nation. My fellow architects are already designing buildings that are 'net zero' consumers of energy. According to the AIA 2030 Commitment report, architects now have almost 200 net-zero energy building projects underway across the country, a 270 percent increase in just over two years.
“By voting to kill requirements to reduce fossil fuel consumption in federal buildings, the House has abrogated its role in making the U. S. government a global leader in sustainability by the year 2030. This move will continue to hold federal taxpayers hostage to the whims of global energy markets.
“As we have said previously, our 86,000 member architects are ready to support legislation that keeps energy conservation and fossil fuel reduction goals in place for the federal government and positions the United States as a leader globally in conserving resources.
“We are heartened by the White House’s announcement that the president would veto this legislation, specifically citing the repeal of Section 433 as one of several major objections. We will continue to oppose legislation that only encourages use of fossil fuels at great cost to taxpayers, not to mention the environment.”